Companies adopt different employee recognition programs for a lot of reasons. It raises employee morale, attracts and keeps essential employees, and increases productivity. Employees also become more competitive, which results in higher revenues and profitability. It improves quality, safety, and customer service. Employee stress, absenteeism, and turnover becomes lower. A recognition program needs to meet several criteria for it to be effective.
There are several keys to a successful recognition program. One is the company’s commitment of resources. The company should set funds for the program during the budgeting process for the year ahead. Establish methods for distributing funds to departments, divisions, or subsidiaries. Managers need to dedicate the resources properly. Planning is as important as the execution of the program. Employees and supervisors should be able to run the program. This process will ensure a fair and impartial distribution of funds. It will also make the funds available once the company announces the plan.
Goals and values
Align recognition programs with the company’s mission, vision, values and goals. Employees can recognize a clear connection, or lack thereof, between what the management states are essential and what gets rewarded at work. The alignment of the recognition program with the company’s core values ensures its success.
Employees must understand the rationale for a recognition program. The awards should be in line with the achievement and the degree of effort they represent. The recognition system will be useless if employees feel that the company underplays their work. Employees can also consider inconsequential incentives as an insult. Insincere gestures of appreciation will throw them off instead of becoming lured in. Awards should be consistent with the achievement and provide meaning to the recipient. An employee who completes a two-year project deserves a more significant award than one who does quick favour for the management.
Deliver the award or recognition as close as possible to the time of the desired behaviour. It will strengthen the link between the employee’s action and the effect on the company. Most companies have a particular day or week for employee recognition. But, it is best to recognize employees in real-time rather than wait for a future event.
The manner of delivery can either make or break the recognition program. The presentation should be sincere and heartfelt. A substantial gift means nothing when not delivered well. A manager’s single act of personal consideration can increase an employee’s motivation more. Presentations at special events will make the awards even more meaningful.
Managers must know their subordinates well enough to know the types of awards and recognition the employees would regard as motivating and essential. Giving custom awards plaques with the employee’s name on it will have a significant impact not only on the recipient but to the whole team. Including the employee’s achievement in the engraved message on the award will also add value to it.